We were first introduced to Kregel Publications and Susan K. Marlow‘s delightful books chronicling the life of Andrea Carter (Andi), a girl who lives in California on a horse ranch in the late 1800s when Bookworm and I reviewed Thick as Thieves two years ago. This time, the girls and I were able to review two new Andi titles: Andi Saddles Up and Andi Under the Big Top, both part of the Circle C Stepping Stones series.
About the Circle C Books
There are now four different lines of Circle C books featuring Andrea Carter.
Circle C Beginnings. These books are designed for readers ages 6 to 9. There are six books in the series, and they feature Andrea at 6 years old. We’ve read all of these books and loved them!
Circle C Stepping Stones. These books are designed for readers age 7 to 10 and feature Andi at nine years old. Andi Saddles Up and Andi Under the Big Top are the first two books in this series. Books three and four are set to be released in November, 2017, and books five and six are scheduled to be released in July, 2018.
Circle C Adventures. For readers ages 9 to 12, these books feature a 12 year old Andi. We also reviewed one of the seven titles in this series, Tales from the Circle C Ranch.
Circle C Milestones. For readers 11 and older, this series follows Andrea Carter from ages 14 to 18.
About Andi Saddles Up
Andi Saddles Up opens on Andi’s 9th birthday. While she and her family are enjoying her birthday dinner, an irate neighbor, Mr. Hollister, bursts in on the festivities and fights with Andi’s older brother, Chad, about a natural property line between their two ranches. A stream had been the property line, but thanks to recent changes that caused the stream bed to shift, the Carter’s now have less land, and Chad is insisting that his property ends where the old stream was.
Later, Andi is out riding when she meets a girl her age, Sadie. The two girls have fun spending time together, but there is a problem with their friendship. Sadie is Mr. Hollister’s daughter. Soon the two girls are caught in the middle of the land feud.
About Andi Under the Big Top
Andi is overjoyed that the circus has come to town. She meets one young circus hand, Henry, who works in the circus. Andi is envious of Henry until she realizes that traveling and working with the circus is not glamorous. In fact, it can be dangerous. Andi soon takes it upon herself to try to help Henry escape from the circus, but Henry, as much as he likes Andi, takes advantage of the situation in a most surprising way.
Additional Educational Opportunities
While the books themselves are educational and teach young readers about the history of the time, you can help your children learn even more through the additional resources that Susan K. Marlow offers. You can download free activity pages that include activities such as vocabulary, literary terms, and learning about gear horses need. There are 25 pages of activities for each book, and Marlow even includes a schedule you can follow to finish the book and corresponding activity pages in 21 days.
There is also an optional lapbook you can add to supplement the activity pages and stretch the unit to 28 days. The lapbook is available for $6 for eBook or $12 for print.
Our Experience with These Books
Like all of the other Andi books that we have read, we loved these. The girls and I read one chapter a night as their bedtime story. I have already purchased the lapbooks and activity pages for the earliest series, Circle C Beginnings. I’ll use this as part of our homeschooling as soon as Cuddle Bug is a stronger reader. I also plan to do the same with the books in the Circle C Stepping Stones series.
Both girls loved the books, and Cuddle Bug especially enjoyed the illustrations throughout.
These are wholesome, educational books that are a boon to any homeschool program. There also good for kids to read on their own.
Keep up with Susan K. Marlow & Kregel Publications via social media:
I was one of 60 people to review these books. To read more reviews, click on the link below: